Light & Shadows of Chalandor Book of Shadows
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Autumn_Heather
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(Date Posted:02/13/2009 00:39 AM)
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All Herbs
Starting with
'R'
Goes Here!

~Raspberry~

 

Folk Names: European Raspberry, Red Raspberry

Gender: Feminine

Planet: Venus

Element: Water

Powers: Protection, Love

Magical Uses:  The brambles (branches) of the raspberry are hung up at doors and windows for protection.  This is also done when a death has occurred, so that the spirit won't re-enter the house once it has left.

Raspberry is served as a love-inducing food, and the leaves are carried by pregnant women to alleviate the pains of pregnancy and childbirth.

 

Rose

Type: Essential Oil
Energy: N/A
Gender:
 N/A
Planet: 
Venus
Elements:  Water
Powers:  Love, Peace, Sex, Beauty

Put a few drops in a diffuser to spread loving energy throughout your home.  The scent will calm domestic problems and instill peace and happiness.

Inhaling the scent is helpful to the psychological impotence in men and may increase sperm count.  

Inhale the scent and visualize its energies leading you into a mutually satisfying emotional relationship.  

Rosemary

Type: Essential Oil
Energy: N/A
Gender:
 N/A
Planet: 
Sun
Elements:  Fire
Powers:  Longevity, Conscious Mind, Memory, Love

Smell the scent while you visualize a long, healthy life.

When you need to clear your conscious mind - inhale the scent.  

Place a few drops on a cotton ball and keep it next to you when you are studying and have to memorize the material - sniff often.  When you need to recall, smell the oil again and the information will make itself available.  

Red Clover

Scientific name: Trifolium pratense


Medicinal value
This herb is used as a nerve tonic, as a sedative for exhaustion, to strengthen children with weak systems and is used with children for coughs, bronchitis, wheezing, as it is mild to their systems. In combination with other drugs it is used for the treatment of cancer and for skin eruptions

Religious importance
It is believed that this herb brings luck, prosperity and health. Carrying a three-leaf clover gives you protection and if worn over the right breast it will bring you success in all undertakings.

Habitat
Clover being an excellent cover crop is planted in fallow areas and turned under in the fall, it makes an excellent fertilizer for poor soils.

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RE:'R'
(Date Posted:02/13/2009 00:40 AM)

AMERICA ADOPTS A REVERED

           RUSSIAN REMEDY    

Photo by Henriette Kress, Helsinki, Finland

Discover the impressive benefits of rhodiola.

By Evelyn Leigh

High in alpine and arctic regions of the Northern Hemisphere grows an unassuming herb with some remarkable characteristics. Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea), a plant adapted to the harsh and unforgiving climate of Siberia and similar regions, appears to have the ability to help the human body adapt to and defend against the debilitating effects of stress.

                                            

Rhodiola, which helps the body adapt to stress, is harvested solely from the wild. Photo by Henriette Kress, Helsinki, Finland

Rhodiola displays all the attributes of a classic adaptogen (a valuable tonic herb that strengthens the body’s nonspecific resistance to the effects of physical stress, such as that caused by overwork or extreme temperatures). Modern research, backed by centuries of traditional use, suggests rhodiola can help counteract stress-related fatigue, enhance stamina and work performance, and perhaps even boost mood and memory.

Too good to be true? Well, almost. While the health benefits seem promising, some experts are concerned that the new enthusiasm for rhodiola has taken a toll on the plant itself. The recent increase in demand for the herb, which is harvested solely from the wild, threatens to deplete wild plant populations — unless efforts to improve the sustainability of sources are stepped up soon.

Rhodiola, Yesterday and Today

Little known in North America until a few years ago, rhodiola has long been a popular remedy in Eastern European and Asian nations, especially Russia and Scandinavian countries. The long list of disorders for which rhodiola has been traditionally used includes fatigue, depression and other nervous system conditions, altitude sickness, headaches, anemia, gastrointestinal problems, colds and flu, and infections. The use of the herb in Europe stretches back to the time of the ancient Greeks, and it was used as a brain tonic in France as early as the 19th century.

                                               

Rhodiola is native to dry, high altitude regions of the Northern Hemisphere. Photo courtesy of Rocky Mountain Rare Plants

Today, rhodiola is listed as an official medicine in the pharmacopoeias of Russia, Sweden, France and a number of other European countries, and it remains an esteemed remedy in the traditional Tibetan and Chinese medical systems. In modern Europe, rhodiola is primarily used as a psychostimulant to treat what some researchers call “asthenic” or “neurasthenic” conditions. These conditions, characterized by such symptoms as fatigue, decreased work performance and disturbances in mood, sleep and appetite, may develop in response to severe physical or mental strain or after debilitating illness.

It’s worth noting that the terms “asthenia” and “neurasthenia” are no longer commonly used in the United States, in part because many of the symptoms overlap with those of other conditions, such as depression and chronic fatigue syndrome. However, the terms continue to be widely used by researchers and health practitioners in other parts of the world.

A Look at the Research

Rhodiola is perhaps most popular in Russia, where a great deal of the pharmacological research has been conducted. Modern Russian and Scandinavian scientists have investigated the health benefits of rhodiola since 1960, but little original research has been published in English.

Among the few papers in English are two small, placebo-controlled European clinical studies published in the journal Phytomedicine in 2000. These studies evaluated the herb’s ability to enhance work performance and counteract stress-related fatigue in human subjects under realistic work conditions.

Rhodiola Facts

A perennial plant with yellow flowers, rhodiola is native to dry, high-altitude regions of Asia, Europe and other areas of the Northern Hemisphere. The part of the plant used medicinally is the rhizome, a fleshy underground stem. Common names for rhodiola include golden root, Arctic root and roseroot. The last of these names refers to the rose-like fragrance of the rhizome. The plant is a member of the family Crassulaceae, a group made up primarily of succulents that also includes the genus Sedum.

The genus Rhodiola contains more than 100 different species, and at least 20 of these are used in traditional Asian medicine. However, it is important to note that nearly all of the scientific research has been conducted on R. rosea, so whether or not other species confer the same health benefits is unknown.

The first study showed that low-dose treatment with rhodiola extract reduced symptoms of fatigue in young, healthy medical students on night duty. In the second study, treatment with rhodiola enhanced physical fitness, reduced mental fatigue, improved neuromotor function and boosted general well-being for a group of medical students during a stressful exam period.

In spite of the scarcity of research published in English, some recent articles in HerbalGram and Alternative Medicine Review provide an excellent overview of other scientific research to date. According to these research summaries, the herb’s adaptogenic properties have been well documented in human, animal and laboratory studies. Trials have shown rhodiola effectively counters fatigue and protects against the effects of stress, hypoxia (oxygen deprivation), extreme temperatures, intense physical activity and other factors. Additional studies have demonstrated rhodiola has antioxidant properties, benefits the central nervous system and can help protect the heart from stress-induced damage. Anecdotal reports suggest the plant may help with depression, memory loss, cognitive problems, sexual dysfunction and a host of other conditions, but more research is needed to confirm these applications. There have been no reports of safety problems or toxicity.

As with most herbs, no single compound appears to be responsible for rhodiola’s activity. Currently, researchers believe the most active chemical ingredients are compounds called rosavins. Rhodiola extracts are often standardized to both rosavins and salidroside. Most of the extracts used in rhodiola clinical studies were standardized to a minimum of 3 percent rosavins and 0.8 to 1 percent salidroside; this is the ratio in which these compounds occur naturally in the plant.

Researchers are not yet sure how rhodiola achieves its impressive benefits. However, it appears the herb affects the function of neurotransmitters, brain chemicals that transport messages between nerves and help to regulate mood and other functions. In some studies, small and medium-sized doses of rhodiola were shown to stimulate the release of and enhance the effects of the neurotransmitters norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin in the central nervous system.

A Word About Sustainability

Unfortunately, there is another side to the rhodiola story — one that environmentally conscious herb consumers may find difficult to ignore. Rhodiola is harvested exclusively from the wild, and increased commercial demand is threatening the health of wild plant populations.

Rhodiola Resources

Herb Pharm
P.O. Box 116
Williams, OR 97544
(800) 348-4372
www.herb-pharm.com

Natura Health Products
249 A St., Ste. A
Ashland, OR 97520
(541) 488-0210
www.naturahealthproducts.com

Nature’s Harmony
6 Commerce Crescent
Acton, ON L7J 2X3 Canada
(877) 929-2548
www.naturesharmony.com

New Chapter
22 High St.
Brattleboro, VT 05301
(800) 543-7279
www.new-chapter.com

NOW Foods
www.nowfoods.com

Paradise Herbs
8884 Warner Ave. # 153
Fountain Valley, CA 92708
(800) 691-2573
www.paradiseherbs.com

Rocky Mountain Rare Plants
1706 Deerpath Rd.
Franktown, CO 80116
www.rmrp.com

According to Rob McCaleb, president of the Herb Research Foundation in Boulder, Colorado, now is the time for herb suppliers to develop sustainable sources of rhodiola. “Sustainability is becoming the new standard for earth-friendly products,” he explains. “[The term] ‘certified sustainable’ goes beyond organic to assure the continued availability of the plant and the health of the ecosystem it grows in. It also benefits the people who depend on these plants for their livelihood by helping to guarantee a future supply.”

Destructive harvest practices have already decimated rhodiola populations in certain parts of Russia. Russian forestry experts have established methods to monitor and control wild harvesting of other high-value herbs, such as eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus), to ensure their continued availability and protect the forest ecosystem. Yet no such protections have been put in place for rhodiola. “The Russians really are very conscious about their harvest practices,” McCaleb says. “Unfortunately, they did not foresee this supply problem, so they did not take the same measures to protect rhodiola.”

If sustainable sources of rhodiola are not created quickly, a shortage could develop, McCaleb points out. “This should be a wake-up call for suppliers,” he says. “There’s opportunity, there’s demand, and there’s good science to support the health benefits of the herb. This is a chance to do things right.”

Consumers can make a difference by asking hard questions about the sources of the herbs they buy. “I think there’s good cause for optimism,” McCaleb says. “Customers are responding to issues of sustainability by demanding sustainably produced products. And through our work at the Herb Research Foundation, we know there are manufacturers who will respond by insisting upon sustainable sources and suppliers who will accept the challenge of buying sustainably.” 

Evelyn Leigh is a writer, editor and herbalist who lives to garden in Boulder, Colorado. She is the co-author of The Encyclopedia of Popular Herbs (Prima Publishing, 2000).

RHODIOLA ROSEA (Russian Rhodiola, Golden root) -
Anti-Aging Medicine of 21st Century

A large proportion of all aging diseases (perhaps 70-80%) is believed to occur because the stress level is too high, and/or too long-term. High-stress modern living is probably the main factor causing chronic disease and premature aging. Fortunately, Mother Nature has an answer to this challenge - a unique class of herbal products called "adaptogens".
Adaptogens have the broadest spectrum of healing properties of any herbal medicine, but their unique value is that they specifically relieve stress.

History of Rhodiola rosea

Adaptogens were discovered in 1947 by the Russian scientist Dr. Nicolai Lazarev, who in fact coined the name "adaptogen". Dr. Lazarev was also the mentor of Dr. Brekhman, who conducted extensive research on adaptogenic herbs. Dr Brekhman's first major focus was the now well known Panax Ginseng, also called Korean or Chinese Ginseng. This worked, but unfortunately it has a few drawbacks that have since become evident. It sometimes has side effects such as causing constipation and over-excitement which for some people is too stimulating. Dr. Brakhman soon moved on to other herbs and became recognized as the world's leading expert on adaptogens. Since then, hundreds of experimental and clinical studies on adaptogens have been done - most of them in Russia and Germany. Most of these studies have shown the outstanding stress-protective and immune system enhancing capacities of adaptogens.
You may be familiar with the names of what are now called "first-generation" adaptogens: Panax Ginseng, American Ginseng, and Eleutherococcus senticosus (Siberian Ginseng). But in this article I want to tell you about a unique adaptogen of the "second generation", Rhodiola rosea (Russian Rhodiola), which is a powerful anti-aging phyto supplement with adaptogenic and anti-stress activity. In Russia, Rhodiola rosea also known as "Golden root", has been used for centuries to cope with the cold Siberian climate and stressful life. But before describing this unusual herb, let's say a few words about stress itself.



 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


How do you feel?
The main effects of adaptogens are an increased availability of energy during the day, a reduction of stressed feelings, increased endurance, greater mental alertness, and deep and restful sleep. Also, adaptogens significantly accelerate the recovery process after illness. The author of this article was ill for many years, and became weaker and weaker, despite trying a variety of medicines and supplements. Doctors could not diagnose the illness, but probably it was an autoimmune disorder, with too many symptoms to name. One day one of my friends had sent me roots of Rhodiola rosea from Moscow (Russia) and advised me to prepare Rhodiola water tea to drink. After some trial and error, I found this Siberian root worked better than anything else I had tried; and it increased the effectiveness of other supplements as well. I decided to search to find out more about this wonderful herbal adaptogen.
According to modern science, adaptogens are natural plant products that increase the body's ability to cope with internal and external stress factors, and normalize the functions of the organism. They help maintain the stable internal environment inside the organism known as homeostasis. An important characteristic is that they are safe, possessing few known side effects.
More info about adaptogens

The three phases of stress progression
1) Alarm phase - When some new stress factor strikes the body this causes a sudden release of internal stress-hormones - corticosteroids and catheholamines. If the stress is very intense it can damage the regulatory systems of the body permanently and immediately (for example in the case of exposure to high levels of nuclear radiation); but if one is lucky, or if the person takes adaptogens, than it is possible to smoothly progress further to the "adaptation phase".
2) Adaptation phase - If the stress factor continues (for example, in sport it might be heavy athletic training) our body learns to tolerate the stressful stimulus - "adapt" - and increases its resistance to the stress factor. The "adaptation phase" is usually a safe period. The longer we can stay in the "adaptation phase", the better.
3) Finally, the exhaustion phase appears, when the body fails to fight stress anymore and simply gives up. In this "exhaustion phase", disease symptoms rapidly appear and get worse.
Diseases associated with stress may appear in the first "alarm phase", but they mainly appear in the third "exhaustion phase" when the body cannot fight stress anymore. This third phase usually develops after a period of months or years. Everything depends on the duration of the "adaptation phase". Sometimes the body may be fortunate and escape this third phase altogether, provided it can keep the stress under control. It is possible to do this by taking adaptogens; they can help you to stay in the "adaptation phase" for as long as possible.
Taking Rhodiola rosea extract, can make coping with stress much easier! When regularly taking Rhodiola the initial "alarm phase" of your stress will smoothly progress to the "adaptation phase". Rhodiola rosea can help you to stay in this safe "adaptation phase" for a much longer time or even permanently, so preventing your body from proceeding further to the extremely dangerous "exhaustion phase".
Where to buy

Scientific background
Promising "second-generation" adaptogen Rhodiola rosea (Russian Rhodiola) is a perennial plant with red, pink, or yellowish flowers. It has no biological relation to the "common" rose, but due to its similar fragrance it has been used as a substitute for Attar of Roses. One of the greatest things Rhodiola does is enhance mental and physical performance. It has been widely used by Russian athletes and cosmonauts to increase energy. Rhodiola is cardio-protective, normalizing the heart rate immediately after intense exercise. It improves the nervous system and mental functions such as memory, by increasing blood-supply to the muscles and brain, and it also increases protein synthesis (1,3,4). Rhodiola rosea has extraordinary pharmacological properties as an anti-mutagen and anti-depressive agent. In this respect Rhodiola rosea is much more powerful than other adaptogens. In one study done by O.M. Duhan and colleagues (5), the anti-mutagenic activities of Panax Ginseng and of Rhodiola rosea were compared. It became clear that the extracts of Rhodiola rosea had a higher capacity to counteract gene mutations induced by various mutagens (up to about 90% inhibition in some cases). The anti-depressive and anti-stress activity of Golden root is higher than that of St. John's Wort, Ginkgo biloba and Panax Ginseng. Furthermore, Rhodiola rosea is five times less toxic than Panax ginseng. In an experiment on rats with Pliss lymphosarcoma (PLS) it was shown (6) that partial hepatectomy, a course application of Rhodiola rosea extract or combined effects inhibit the growth of tumors by 37%, 39% and 59%, respectively, and that of metastases by 42%, 50% and 75%. In one human study (7) oral administration of Rhodiola rosea extract to 12 patents with superficial bladder carcinoma (T1G1-2) improved the characteristics of the urothelial tissue integration, parameters of leukocyte integrins and T-cell immunity. The average frequency of relapses for these patients was found to fall twice. In another clinical trial 150 individuals suffering from depression took Rhodiola rosea extracts for a period of one month. At the end of that period two-thirds of them had full remission of clinical manifestations of depression, and had become more active and more sociable. Daytime weakness and general weakness disappeared. Rhodiola rosea extracts reduce significantly the yield of cells with the chromosome aberrations in vivo and inhibit unscheduled DNA synthesis induced by N-nitroso-N-methylurea in vitro (8). It is emphasized that Rhodiola rosea extracts have rejuvenative properties due to their ability to raise the efficiency of the intracell DNA repair mechanisms.
Complete List of Scientific Articles (Abstracts)

Rosavin formula
ROSAVIN formula

Pharmacological activity - quality matters!
There are products on the market that contain Rhodiola rosea. But unfortunately these products often have only limited or even no biological activity at all. Common reasons for these deficiencies are bad harvesting during the wrong season, harvesting from a climatic rigion not suitable for the plant or from a bad geographic area, harvesting wear species of the plant, also overdrying, or using an inferior extraction method. The manufacturing process also is a key factor in the preparation of a high quality adaptogenic extract, as is the selection of high quality raw materials using proper assay methods. The main active components of true Rhodiola rosea that are responsible for the extraordinary potency of Rhodiola rosea are cinnamol alcohol glycosides, especially ROSAVIN - cinnamyl-O-(6-O-L-arabinopyranosyl-D-glucopyranosid) and SALIDROSIDE. Quality Rhodiola rosea extract should contain at least 3% rosavins and 1% or less salidroside.

Rhodiola rosea and immunity
Rhodiola rosea stimulates the immune system in two ways: FIRST - by specific direct stimulation of immune defence (stimulates one of the most important type of immune cells - Natural Killer Cells, NK-Cells seek and destroy the infected cells on our bodies). Rhodiola rosea normalises the immune system by improving T-cell immunity (7) Rhodiola has been shown to increase the body's resistance to toxins that may accumulate during infection development. SECOND - by making a person less susceptible to stress. Scientists found out that stress suppresses immunity and destroys our resistance to various forms of bacterial or virus attack. Due to the natural killer cell's effect on tumours Rhodiola rosea may enhance B cell immunity by preventing the suppression of B cell immunity, which can occur during stress. Being under stress, a great portion of the body's energy is expended for nothing. When we are chronically exposed to stress that continually robs energy from other systems. The general effect is a lowered immune response and decreased health.

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Autumn_Heather
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RE:'R'
(Date Posted:02/13/2009 00:41 AM)

For Whom Rhodiola rosea
Rhodiola has been used in connection with f
atigue, mental performance and athletic performance (to improve endurance). The Russian medicine has traditionally given Rhodiola rosea to its cosmonauts, soldiers, sportsmen and ageing political leaders as an effective anti-aging medicine. Russian Rhodiola helped them to improve cognitive functions and physical performance.

Prevention of development of fatigue, asthenic states, catarrhal seasonal diseases;
Use in comprehensive therapy for treatment of neuroses, depression, hypotension, and other diseases;
Restoration of health following recently endured communicable and somatic diseases;
Increased bodily resistance to physical and mental overloads, and negative environmental effects;
In sport - improved performance, resistance to strain, restoration of strength with increased physical loads;
Prevention of alcohol and drug addiction;
For elderly and aged persons;
It may be successfully taken by drivers, flight personnel, traffic controllers, as well as other professional cohorts of people occupationally engaged in work requiring increased attention.
 
Rhodiola rosea - natural alternative to Meridia (Reductil) slimming tablets

Bulgarian researchers have demonstrated that intake of the herbal remedy Rhodiola rosea activates hormone-sensitive lipase, which plays a key role in breaking down the fat stored in adipose tissue (2). Previous Soviet clinical studies showed that the combination of Rhodiola rosea together with physical exercise can be a powerful tool in the activation of fat-tissue lipase, resulting in the breakdown of stored fat. Georgian clinical data showed that the intake of tablets of Rhodiola rosea extract by obese subjects led to a mean weight loss of 19 pounds (11% reduction). In a control group, in contrast, the weight change was insignificant. The Bulgarian study suggests a detailed mechanism for the fat-loss effect (2).


Dosage
The usual amounts taken are 200 to 600 mg per day of a Rhodiola rosea extract standardized to contain 2-3% rosavins and 0.8-1% salidroside. (10) The nonstandardized amount would be 1 gram of the root three times daily (usually 5-6 tablets per day), the amount for the alcoholic extract (40% alcohol) is 5 to 40 drops (0.5 - 1 teaspoon) two to three times per day and for the tea from Rhodiola rosea roots is 1 - 2 cap per day. Rhodiola is usually taken with water before meals or at mealtimes. Please note, that Rhodiola has a more stimulating effect at lower amounts, and a more sedating effect at higher amounts.

Side effect and contraindications
Rhodiola has been the subject of many clinical studies. No side effects or interactions have been reported. Animal studies indicate that rhodiola has a low level of toxicity. (10) Don't take rhodiola during pregnancy or while breast-feeding. There is no information available about the safety of rhodiola in pregnancy or lactation. Insomnia may be a risk with high doses of rhodiola. A high dose is considered to be daily intakes of 1,500 to 2,000 mg and above of a Rhodiola rosea standardized extract.
There are no well-known drug or nutrient interactions associated with Rhodiola rosea. However, much remains to be learned about this herb and how it may interact with other adaptogens, such as Siberian ginseng, as well as with other dietary supplements.

Rhodiola or Ginseng?
Rhodiola rosea (Russian Rhodiola) has all the advantages of Ginseng and Eleutherococcus but lacks the tendency to cause over-excitement that may sometimes occur with ginseng, or constipation as sometimes occurs with eleutherococcus. Russian Rhodiola is FIVE times less potentially toxic, than Panax ginseng.

Russian or Chinese?
Be Careful!
Very precise analytical tests done by HPLC did confirm, that only Rhodiola rosea of Russian origin contains key active components: Rosavin, Rosarin, Rosin. Often so-called Rhodiola rosea formulas, sold in the United States (such as "Tibetan" Rhodiola or "Chinese" Rhodiola) contain no activity at all, as these formulas lack the key ingredient Rosavins while they are high in Salidroside. Only Rhodiola rosea of Russian origin (West and North Siberia) has the highest pharmacological activity and contains key active components ROSAVIN, ROSARIN, ROSIN and SALIDROSIDE. While so-called Tibetan Rhodiola and Rhodiola rosea of Chinese origin very often do not have enough potency and contains only SALIDROSIDE. Compare content of key substances in dry roots: Chinese Rhodiola often has no activity at all, but there are other species of Rhodiola that are predomin-ating in China, such as Tibetan Rhodiola, Rhodiola quadrifida, Rhodiola kirilowii, Rhodiola heterodonta and many others. For the best quality of Rhodiola rosea click here

In Conclusion
Rhodiola rosea of Russian origin is now slowly but surely becoming more widely accepted in Europe and the USA as a powerful anti-aging, anti-stress formula. In today's culture of hustling and bustling, with chaos coming from every direction, I do not think we can afford to ignore this natural medicine any longer. It is in our interest to take advantage of these powerful herbs if we want to survive the demands modern life imposes on us. One does not have to be a professor or scientist to research herbs and educate oneself on how they work. The motivation depends on how much one desires to improve one's quality of life. Since life is so short, our advice is: don't wait until you have a day off, maybe next week. Why not take Russian Rhodiola as soon as possible, so your week will be more productive?
Taking Rhodiola rosea, you will be better able to cope with stress!


Rhodiola Rosea cultivation
Rhodiola Rosea can be cultivated in two ways - from seed, or by vegetative propagation.
Cultivation from seed
The seeds of Rhodiola Rosea are very small (about 1.5 - 2mm long by 0.3 - 0.6mm). Growing from seed can be difficult, because the dried seeds have a low germination capacity (only about 2 - 25% of them will germinate). However, this can be improved if, prior to planting, the seeds are stored in moist sand in cool conditions for about a month. (The dry seeds are soaked in water overnight, then mixed into moist sand and kept in a suitable container). After storage for one month at a temperature between 0 - 2°C, the germination capacity will typically increase to around 75%. And by using natural stratification, sowing outdoors in the autumn (during September-October), it is possible to achieve 95-100% germination. After planting (see below), the seeds sprout after 4 - 5 days and the first leaves appear in 25 - 40 days.
Vegetative propagation (root division)

Rhodiola Rosea can also be propagated by root division. For this, you need to cut the underground rhizome-like roots into sections 1.5 to 15cm long, maintaining at least one bud and some hair-roots on each piece. Root division can be performed throughout the autumn months before frost, or in early spring. The cut pieces should be transplanted into soil, and after 3 weeks the plantlets should start growing.
Planting
The best type of soil is sandy or brown forest soil, rich in humus. The soil needs to be weeded regularly. The bed should be in an open, sunny place, and prior to planting should be treated with processed manure (3 - 5kg/sq m) or fertiliser (4 - 6kg/sq m). Adding grit, gravel, or vermiculite to the soil increases soil porosity and encourages growth; however, peat-based fertiliser should not be used. During the first month, the plants need to be carefully watered and weeded. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle, and grow them on in the greenhouse for the first winter. Plant out in early summer of the following year.

Harvesting

The plants usually reach their maximum height in the third year after planting, but a minimum of 5 years must pass before the medicinal roots can be harvested.
Harvesting should take place in autumn, since at this time the plant stops its vegetative growth and the dry-matter content of the root is higher. Harvesting is a simple process of digging out the roots by hand. In the case of large-scale cultivation, mechanical assistance from a cultivator machine etc. would be required.

Processing the harvested roots

The gathered roots should be sliced into thin strips about 10cm long, and dried in a well-ventilated drier at 40 - 50°C for 4 - 7 days. Under these conditions the original white color of the roots turns light brown. The roots should not be dried in the sun, since strong light destroys the active medicinal component! The dried root is best stored in paper packets in a cool dry place, and will keep for up to 3 years.


By: John Hyatt, CA
Disclaimer: The ideas, procedures and suggestions contained in this article are intended for informational purposes only. Always consult with your doctor. All materials regarding your health require medical supervision. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.

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RE:'R'
(Date Posted:02/13/2009 00:45 AM)

The Rowan Tree
Tree of Imbolc, Divine Inspiration and Seership

By Glennie Kindred

(Originally published at Imbolc 1998)

The Rowan (sorbus aucuparia), Mountain Ash, Quickbeam, has the ability, perhaps more than any other tree, to help us increase our psychic abilities and connections. It has a beneficial energy which will increase our abilities to receive visions and insights which in turn will increase our communication with the spirit realms.

The Rowan Tree and BerriesIn the past it was valued as a protection against enchantment, unwanted influences and evil spirits. Sprigs of Rowan were placed over doorways and fixed to cattle sheds to protect the animals from harm. Similarly, farmers would drive their sheep through hoops of Rowan branches, and in Wales Rowan trees were planted in churchyards to watch over and protect the spirits of the dead.

The Rowan berry has a tiny five-pointed star opposite its stalk. The pentagram, ancient symbol of protection, is an outward manifestation of the Rowan's protective powers, but there is more to the picture than this. The Rowan grows higher up the sides of mountains than any other native tree, often sprouting and growing from the tiniest of crevices and growing in the most inaccessible of spots. Its life-force energy is strong and determined. It reflects a power, a vitality and tenacity, with a clear message that harnessing this powerful life-force will make any manifestation possible. Its message is not to give up, but to hold on strong to what you believe in and to the power of the life-force.

The Rowan strengthens your personal power. It is this aspect which makes the Rowan such a powerful ally. It will strengthen your positive life-energy so that your personal power is so strong that it can withstand any negative forces. This is how it acts as a protective influence. It is not just the Rowan which protects you but you, yourself. An increase in psychic ability and life-force energy puts you in touch with your own power, thus breaking any victim consciousness, or malevolent influence, which may have entrapped and weakened you.

It is the Rowan's ability to open up communication with the spirit realms which is the key to the Rowan energy. Its name is linked with the Norse word "runa", meaning "a charm", and the the Sanskrit "runa", meaning " a magician. Rune staves, sticks on which the runes were inscribed, were made of Rowan wood and it would be an appropriate wood to choose for making a set of ogham sticks if you wanted to make a set quickly without waiting to collect each stick from each of the relevant trees. The leaves and berries are added to divination incenses. Rowan twigs are used for metal divining, just as hazel twigs are used for water divining. Speer posts, magically protective house timbers inscribed with runes and magically charged patterns, were traditionally made of Rowan wood.

Rowan is the wood to use for making any magical tool which has anything to do with divining, invocation and communication with the spirit realms. It will help you to discriminate between what will do you harm and good and help you deal with anything which threatens you.

An increase in abilities to communicate and understand communication from the spirit realms or otherworld will bring meaningful insights, visions and in increase in intuition. Divination will provide a tool for these communications, so if you are working with the Rowan, increase your oracular consultations. But it is also important to "read" the messages which are constantly passed to us from the spirit realms and to be open to receiving and interpreting these signs in our everyday lives. This will merge the inner and outer sources of information at our disposal.

Rowan is valued for its ability to provide us with forewarnings and foreknowledge. It gives us an increased awareness of enchantments or of outside influences which are affecting us and of which we had previously been unaware. This, along with an increase in personal power and vitality, is why it is such an important tree to communicate with. It brings a balanced control of all our senses and abilities on many different levels of our existence. If you are working with the Rowan, it is important to take heed of any warnings or negative influences which you pick up on, using meditation and diviniation to help you to find ways to deal with them.

Meditation which is focused on getting in touch with spirit guides in the otherworld is greatly enhanced by holding a Rowan twig, wand or touchwood. Similarly, Rowan wood can be used to focus your intent to understand and receive messages from the otherworld. Wearing a Rowan talisman, or carrying a piece of Rowan touchwood, will also enhance these abilities.

The Rowan is associated with Imbolc, the great fire festival of early February, held to mark the quickening of the year. Dedicated to the young maiden aspect of the Triple Goddess, she, like the Rowan, is associated with divine inspiration, illumination, intuition and the binding power of poetry and healing.

More than ever, we need to harness these feminine principles and make them part of our everyday lives. We are now free of many of the oppressive and destructive influences of Christianity which have suppressed these qualities for so long. For me, Imbolc and the Rowan provide the opportunity to tap into a true synthesis and integration of our physical and spiritual selves by helping us to receive and act upon our intuitive insights. They also help us to keep our subconscious in direct communication with our conscious selves.

The Rowan is associated with the planet Mercury, the principle of communications. This free-flowing communicative energy is the underlying value of this tree which can manifest in many different aspects of our lives. Imbolc is connected to the powerful surge of new growth which is stirring in the depths of the earth and thus also represents the rebirth of the spirit and the spiralling out of the light energy from the time of darkness and the upsurge in personal energy with which this is linked.

Working with the Rowan tree at Imbolc would facilitate a quickening of personal power and resources. Make time to link in to transformation visions through any chosen method of diviniation, candle-gazing, scrying, meditation, inspired drawings and poetry.. Leave your conscious mind behind and allow the intuitive process to unfold. Staring into nothingness and daydreaming re very good for you, or staring into mandalas or Celtic knotwork patterns. Sitting with trees and intuitively receiving impressions from them, reading the patterns in their bark, on the hills or in the landscape, or seeing pictures in the fire - all can open the doorway to receiving messags from the Otherworld and our spirit helpers and guides.

If you feel you are in need of the protective qualities of the Rowan, perhaps because you have feelings of being oppressed by strong and powerful dark forces or influences, our you feel you are under psychic attack, then harness the power of the Rowan. Nail sprigs of Rowan across your door lintels and wear a sprig of the leaves, flowers or berries in your hat. Carve yourself a brooch or a talisman to wear. Take a small piece of Rowan wood and sandpaper it smooth so that it is a constant pocket-companion for you to touch and gain strength from. Make a healing-pouch out of chamois leather by cutting out a circle the size of a teacup, make holes all the way round the edge and thread a thong or thread through the holes. In your pouch place bark and berries from the Rowan and wear it round your neck next to your skin if possible.

Another thing you can do is to plant a Rowan tree near your house. This small, beautiful tree is an ideal garden tree as it does not take up too much room and its sparse foliage allows grass to grow beneath it. In the spring it has clusters of white, starry flowers and in the autumn the leaves turn red and orange and it is a mass of red berries which attract the birds into your garden. It has been planted near houses for centuries to ward off evil - witches too, but we all know that this is a corruption of an earlier tradition.

The berries are very useful medicinally. Cut the clusters off the trees in October while they are still firm and red (leave some for the birds!) and hang them upside down in brown paper bags to dry. This is best done in a warm, airy place. When they are completely dry, you can seal them in dark, air-tight jars. The juice from the berries is mildly laxative and makes a good gargle for sore throats and hoarseness. To extract the juice from the dried berries, soak one teaspoonful in one cup of cold water for 10 hours, strain and use as a gargle. When made into jam, the fruit becomes astringent, which is good for mild diarrhoea.

To make the jam, collect fresh berries in the autumn, trim off the stalks and weigh the fruit. Boil the berries, strain off the seeds and skins and reboil the liquid until it sets. You may need to add some crab-apples to provide the pectin.

The fruit can also be boiled, strained and made into wine, and gently boiled to make a vitamin C drink which was previously used for scurvy. The Welsh made a special ale using Rowan berries, but the secret of this is now lost. Perhaps with a creative, intuitive, approach the ale-makers amongst us could create a new Rowanberry ale for feasts, rituals and ceremonies.

The Rowan yields a black dye used for tanning. The Druids used it for dyeing their ceremonial black robes which they used for certain lunar ceremonies. The ancient Druids of Ireland also lit fires of Rowan wood before battles and incantations were spoken over the flames to summon spirits to take part in the fight and to combat evil forces.

Bewitched horses and animals were controlled with Rowan whips and great Rowan thickets were planted at oracular sites throughout Europe. It was noted by John Lightfoot in his Flora Scotica of 1777 that Rowans were planted in the neighbourhood of the ancient stone circles. It was also known that the Druids built special platforms made from interwoven Rowan twigs known as the Wattles of Knowledge. These were used as a kind of bed on which a Druid would lie as part of a ritual which induced a trance to gain hidden knowledge. The surnames Mac Cairthin and MacCarthy come from the old Gaelic word for Rowan and literally mean "Son of the Rowan".

Rowan is the second of the ogham letters, luis. It provides the "quickening" for energy set in motion by the first tree, the Birch, and opens up communication with the spirit realms which is so necessary for anyone wishing to work with trees and magic. The increase in intuitive insights and visions has aleady been discussed here, but the ogham symbol may be used whenever these qualities need to be invoked.

Wands of all sizes may be made from Rowan wood, from a pencil thin wand for the pocket to a large ceremonial wand lavishly dedicated and decorated. It also makes very good walking sticks if you can find a straight length. It is particularly good if you are intending to go night walking. The increase in psychic abilities is obviously enhanced by holding this wood for any long periods of time.

As always, only cut from the living tree after you have asked the tree, told it of your wishes and waited to feel the assent of the tree. Making a deep connection of thanks to the tree is also very important and will ensure that your stick or wand does not carry any residue of unhappiness with it.

If you wish to take all or some of the bark off, it is best to do so soon after you have cut it as it peels off easily at this stage. Rough carving is easiest then too, and you can then leave the wood to dry out naturally outside over a period of a few weeks before fine carving and sanding. It is an easy, softish wood to carve and can be used for small carved objects. Keep awareness of the sacred task you are undertaking while you work and feel your way into connection with the underlying energy of the Rowan which you must honour. Be alert for an increase in your psychic powers which your Rowan wand or stick will induce in you. Use your Rowan wand to help you to find inspired solutions to your problems. Sleep with a piece of Rowan under your pillow to bring inner knowledge. Heed any portents relating to future events.

Whatever your connection to the Rowan, be sure to look out for the changes that will occur as a result of any communication with this tree. It should not be underestimated and its influence will bring about a quickening of your energy on many subtle levels. For this reason, it has always been used by the wise ones and revered as a powerful influence and should be treated with the greatest respect.

 
 
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RE:'R'
(Date Posted:02/13/2009 00:46 AM)

Radish (Raphanus sativus) is a stone diuretic.
The bulbs are used to create obstacles.

Rampion (Campanula rapunculus), also called Ramps and Rapunzel Root, is a good mouth gargle and clears the complexion.

Raspberry (Rubus idaeus) leaves are used to increase fertility.
This plant is put on land to cause problems, but is also used for fertility.

Rattan Vine (Rhamnaceae), also called Supple Jack, is used to increase vitality.
1 gram a day.

Rattle, Yellow (Rhinanthus crista-galli) is good to help with failing eyesight.
1 gram once a day.

Rattlesnake Root (Prenanthes racemosa) is questionably toxic.
This plant is carried to protect from rattlesnakes.

Red Root (Ceanothus Americanus), also called New Jersey Tea and Wild Snowball, is an antispasmodic, anti-syphilitic, expectorant and sedative; it is a common pain-killer.
2 part water to 1 part herb, boil; use 1 - 30 drops throughout the day.

Redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) conditions the skin and relaxes the muscles.
Soak bark in water, boil and apply to skin.
The scent of the leaf is supposed to help with clarification.

Resurrection Plant (Selaginella pilifera), also called Rose of Jericho, is questionably toxic.
This plant is used in resurrection spells, rituals and in necromancy.

Rhododendron, Yellow (Rhododendron chrysanthum) is toxic, but was once used as a wash for rheumatism.
2 teaspoon of dried leaf to 1 liter water, boil and apply externally.

Rhubarb, English (Rheum rhaponticum), also called Bastard Rhubarb, loosens the stools and increases the appetite.
This plant is used to assure fidelity.

Rose, Dog (Rosa canina) cools wounds.
2 part leaf to 1 part water, boil and apply externally.

Rose (Rosa Centifolia), also called Hundred-leaved Rose and Cabbage Rose, is all around good for the heart, liver, stomach and relieves constipation.
Rose petals are used in love sachets. The smell of the petals warms the soul and brings joy.

Rose, Wood (Merremia tuberosa, Ipomoea tuberosa) heals damaged tissue.
1 flower to ½ liter of oil; apply externally.
In magick, the flower is said to be the strongest for love spells and is often duplicated by sawing the tip off a pine cone for financial gain.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is an astringent, an antioxidant and a stimulant.
The smell of the herb improves confidence and creativity.
This herb protects farmlands and gardens.

Rosinweed (Silphium paciniatum), also called Compass Weed, is used for an enlarged spleen, internal bruising, liver problems and ulcers. It treats burns and rashes, and may be a sedative.
Combine this plant with mistletoe and add a bit to someone’s tongue. If they are telling the truth, they will be able to repeat the statement.

Rue, Common (Ruta graveolens) is irritating, but is good for coughs, hysteria and cramps. CAUTION: Avoid during pregnancy.
Powdered herb: 15 - 30 grains; fluid extract: 1/2 - 1 dram a day. Chewing on 1 or 2 of the leaves will leave one giddy.
The root is used in hexes.

Rue, Goat's (Galega officinalis) helps lactation.
8 to 15 grains, from three to five times a day.
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